FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 5, 2013
Media Contact: Natalie Schrimpf 216.269.6525, x. 2520
(Cleveland, OH) — Effective August 9, 2013, The Society of St. Vincent de Paul Cleveland has acquired and assumed operation of Brother Hubbard’s Cupboard, one of the largest food pantries in Cuyahoga County and the second-largest in Northeast Ohio. Located in the Carl B. Stokes Building at 6001 Woodland Avenue in Cleveland’s Central neighborhood – an area which is home to approximately 10,717 residents living in poverty – the pantry serves some 1,700 people monthly and more than 20,000 annually, distributing 543,000 pounds of food each year. In operation since 2004, Brother Hubbard’s Cupboard was previously managed by the Capuchin Franciscan Brothers under the direction of Brother Walt Robb, and was in danger of closing after a recent announcement that Brother Robb was leaving the pantry for a new assignment. Under its new management, the pantry – renamed SVDP Woodland Pantry – will be supervised by Will Skora, operations manager. It is open Fridays from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m.
The need for hunger relief services in the Central neighborhood is very significant, stressed Deborah Beckwith, vice president of Agency Services and Programs at the Greater Cleveland Food Bank, which supplies food to the pantry. The Greater Cleveland Food Bank worked with the Capuchin Brothers and Catholic Charities to locate a viable successor. Among the total number of individuals living in the neighborhood, 71 percent live below 100 percent poverty, while 92 percent live below 200 percent poverty, she said.
According to USDA guidelines, individuals must be at 200 percent of poverty to qualify for receiving food from food pantries, Beckwith added. “Although there are five other pantries that serve the Central area, none are at the capacity of Brother Hubbard’s Cupboard, and we could not let this one close. We were so pleased when the Society of St. Vincent de Paul approached us about wanting to start another food pantry, because it is a great organization with solid experience serving the needy in Northeast Ohio. We are thrilled to have SVDP as a partner in our community hunger relief efforts.”
SVDP Cleveland is looking forward to helping those in need within the Central neighborhood, said John Litten, executive director. “For over nine years, Brother Walt and the Capuchin Brothers did an incredible job serving its residents. The Society looks forward to building upon the tremendous work they have accomplished, and continuing to grow this important ministry.”
In addition to the Woodland Avenue location, SVDP Cleveland operates four other food pantries in Northeast Ohio: St. Philomena Parish, 13824 Euclid Avenue in East Cleveland; Holy Name Parish, 8328 Broadway Avenue SE, Cleveland; 2145 Broadview Road in Cleveland; and in Akron at 93 Kent Street.